This summer has been a journey for me. One that has had its moments of both sadness and joy. My partner and I left the city for good; we have moved to a farm that we are now the stewards of. We will be planning this winter for the spring, we are learning all those things that our ancestors knew and our generations have conveniently forgotten. There is great joy and satisfaction in the process, even when we make mistakes we are moving forward in our learning.
It took moving to a farm to help me regain the perspective that not all crops harvested are those that we expect or that we even understand have been planted. Last night was the Mabon ritual for the group that I am a member of. It was a harvest ritual and I was ready to join in as I have in all of our rituals. But something changed; we got a puppy yesterday morning and all previous plans were made irrelevant. We did not have the proper setup for leaving a puppy alone while both of us participated in ritual, and even if we had, on her first night with us she shouldn't have to be alone at any point. This is the time of bonding and building trust. Planting the seeds of our new relationship with Cerri*. So the decision was made. I would be at ritual but I would not participate in ritual. Instead, I would wait outside the circle taking care of our new child and calming her fears about being gone from her brother and sister.
Now I must tell you that my circle is a long standing one. We have practiced together for many years and while we all walk different spiritual paths with varied beliefs, we have a great sense of self as a group and respect for all of our individuality. Last night was a first for me though, I stood outside; outside of my family, outside of my circle, outside of the energy that was initially built. And yet I was a part of the All.
As darkness enveloped the group a calmness came over the land. Cerri laid down at my feet, watched a part of what was going on in front of her, and quietly fell asleep. What happened next was humbling. The voices of my family of heart began to rise in the darkness, the lone candle on the altar shone brightly, and the energy of the Gods themselves filled the area. The love and beauty was not confined to the circle that had been cast, but engulfed all that was there. I was outside and yet connected deeply to what was transpiring.
Standing outside and looking in I longed to be with my kindred and yet the responsibility for the tiny creature sleeping at my feet allowed me to look at my path, my group, my choices in a whole new light. I was able to harvest a new love and respect for myself and those in my life. Harmony danced on the wind, peace within blessed me with understanding. The crop of desire to be loved and accepted that I planted so long ago when I stepped on to the pagan path was shown in full bloom last night. My path has always been clear to me, but in the darkness last night I was able to harvest the understanding that the path had been chosen for me long before I took that first step.
May we all be so blessed as to trust that our instincts are correct and to find the courage to move beyond fear in our life. It is only then that we can begin to sow the seeds of our life and enjoy the harvest along the way.